Better services for children with visual impairment now available in Western Visayas

CBM, through Cataract Foundation Philippines, Inc., funded a handheld keratometer which allows children to see much better after surgery. The brand new, state-of-the-art equipment will be used by Dr. Nathaniel Chan, a pedia-ophthalmologist from Iloilo City.

A four-year-old girl with cataract on both eyes sits still on her mother’s lap as Dr. Nathaniel Chan, pediatric ophthalmologist in Iloilo City, examines her eyes using a brand new, state-of-the-art handheld keratometer - a medical equipment that provides a very accurate measurement of the artificial lens replaced during cataract surgery. As a result, children can see much better after the surgery.

Cataract Foundation Philippines, Inc. (CFPI), a Bacolod-based foundation that focuses on inclusive eye health, provided the handheld keratometer funded by CBM to Dr. Chan, the lone pedia-ophthalmologist in the Western Visayas and Negros Island regions. He served as a Clinical Fellow in Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus at the Children’s National Medical Center at George Washington University, Washington DC, USA from 2003 to 2004.

Dr. Chan provides free check-up and operation to patients referred by CFPI. These patients come from as far as Palawan and Mindanao. According to him, “We do 20 to 35 free cataract operations for children every year.” The handheld equipment also has a refractometer function, which is used for measuring refractive error and distribution of glasses and will benefit more than a thousand children with visual impairment.

CBM, together with CFPI and its partners, are working together to ensure that eye health services are integrated in local health systems that are accessible by all.